This autumn will see a Dashboard update launched in preparation for the arrival of Kinect in November. As well as addressing whatever issues need to be patched up for Kinect, it has been said that the update will also look at improving the quality of the sound that we receive through our Xbox LIVE headsets.
Currently the Edinburgh Interactive Festival is under way, and Xbox LIVE's Jerry Johnson has been making an appearance there. In his speech to the festival Johnson spoke about the codecs (encoder/decoder) used for voice communication across the Xbox LIVE platform:
The codec we used when we first launched was a low bit rate codec and we stuck with that. We launched and we said we required broadband. We required a 64k connection, which not many people think of as broadband any longer. But that was the minimum requirement to run the service at the time. It's time for us to move on. Especially if we want to think about broadening - a crackly headset on the top of your head – not what people think of when they talk about popular entertainment.
This move could bring the quality closer to other voice over IP (vOIP) services we are perhaps more accustomed too, such as Skype.